Analysts Who Taught Me Everything I Know

Let me start off by saying that I was slightly afraid to write this article. There are so many great analysts out there for baseball and it’s impossible to name them all. If you aren’t in this article it doesn’t mean you haven’t impacted me in some way, I just don’t want this to be over 3,000 words.


With that said I really wanted to put out there some of the names, podcasts, or websites that have impacted me greatly as an analyst and person. I decided to break it down into the categories where these analysts have helped me the most. Everyone below has helped me in some type of way, whether they know it or not.


To the readers, make sure you follow all of them because they all can teach you so much. To those named below who are reading this, thank you. What you do might seem small but in my two years in the fantasy baseball community, you’ve helped me grow and get to where I am now. For that, I am forever grateful.


Prospects


Eric Cross (@EricCross04): Some of the first prospect articles I ever read came from Eric Cross and for good reason. Eric has a way of simplifying things for the average reader and gets right to the point. When I go to look up information on a prospect I literally google “Eric Cross (player’s name)” so I can read his take on said player.


The best part about Eric is that he literally answers everyone. If you have no profile picture with one follower it doesn’t matter to Eric, he will answer you. He stands for something I stand for, making yourself available to everyone. If you somehow don’t follow him please do so and if you want to check out some of his talented writing look no further than his recently released Top-500 Dynasty Rankings here. Eric has helped me grow when it comes to analyzing prospects and he can certainly help you too.


Chris Clegg (@RotoClegg): Chris seems to be the new budding star in this amazing community. Every time I click on his profile he seems to have a bunch of new followers. Chris is a jack of all trades as he can break down hitters, pitchers, and everything else under the sun. Back in the day, he started on SP Streamer and I am so happy I get to say he started with me. His new podcast with Eric Cross Fantrax Toolshed is a delight to listen to especially since you get to hear those smooth southern buttery tones of Chris’s accent. Check out his article breaking down prospect Andrew Vaughn here.


Ray Butler (@Prospects365): Oh man, Ray is a fabulous analyst and is building an empire over at Prospects 365. I’ll never forget the first time I had Ray on my podcast because he literally blew me away with his knowledge on pitching prospects. Ray became a big reason for my drive to grow as an analyst. I came into that podcast thinking my analysis was great but left realizing I needed to step it up and get on his level.


Overall Ray writes for his website Prospects365.com and releases an amazing VIP package. It is your all-inclusive one-stop-shop for everything prospects. It exceeds 80,000 total words and is well worth the cheap price. You can check it out here.


Shelly Verougstraete (@ShellyV_643): People probably get tired of me mentioning Shelly when it comes to following suggestions but it’s just because she is so freaking good. Between her and Eric both of them have always been my two main early sources for prospects. Shelly writes everywhere and it’s because she can translate her thoughts onto paper so well. This is why she writes for Pitcher List, Prospects 365, and RotoGraphs. Her in-depth knowledge is second to none and she has taught me so much about prospects so please check out her most recent article on Pitcher List here.


Strategy


Toby Guevin (@BatflipCrazy): Mr. Pocket Aces is becoming one of the best follows in terms of strategy. Toby talks a lot about replacement value and consistently brings up interesting points in terms of draft strategy. When I listen to podcasts I normally don’t like to listen to the episodes where analysts break down each position by ADP. When it comes to Toby (and Bubba) that gets thrown out the window. He breaks it down so well and keeps me intrigued throughout.


Toby also encourages and utilizes a lot of rolling averages. A tool I never used at the beginning of my analysis but now use on a daily basis because of him. All in all, he provides such a wealth of knowledge and is one of those analysts where you learn something new every time you listen to him. Check out Toby’s website here where you can see his analysis and podcast episodes.


Dave McDonald/Jake Halusker (@RunDMcD/@TheDustmite): I am pairing these two wonderful men together because of their podcast “High Stakes Heat.” This is a newer podcast but has impacted my analysis tremendously in terms of drafting, risk assessment, and a plethora of other aspects of strategy. Both are brilliant minds who have been doing this for a very long time. Dave and Jake challenge everyone’s way of thinking and have quickly become my favorite podcast. Give it a listen here.


Rob DiPietro (@DeadPullHitter): Rob made a statement this year by becoming the Draft Champions overall winner. He is someone who loves to talk about fantasy baseball and I bother the heck out of him. When it comes to strategy Rob gladly lets me slide into his DM’s for some fun discussions.


Rob’s podcast “Pull Hitter Podcast” has had a slew of guests on it this offseason. He has been attacking strategy from all angles making each episode a must-listen. What Rob does best is asking the right questions to his guests. They aren’t cookie-cutter and he forces his guests to not only think about their answers but dig deep into their own respective knowledge of the game. Plug those headphones in and give the Pull Hitter Podcast a try here.


Matt Modica (@Ctmbaseball): Matt was either the first or one of the first high stakes players to follow me. He’s really good at finding interesting statistics and looking at them in a different way than most. He loves to break down seasons into sections to identify potential breakouts or busts.


He then also loves to take underlying metrics of two players who are far apart in ADP and show how similar they can be. It’s always a good exercise to look at stats blindly to eliminate our own bias and Matt taught me that more than anyone. Check out his stout timeline on Twitter here.


Best Ball


Derek Rhoads (@drhoa3): The two accounts for this section are relatively new in my world but have already impacted me greatly. Derek has two of the best tools you will find on Twitter.


First is his injury tool, a tool that displays every single player’s injuries. It also includes their time on the injured list and a lot of beautiful visualization. This tool is a must in terms of injury analysis for fantasy baseball and can be found here.


Second, he created a new tool that you can acquire for a minimal cost. If you love bestball and need a tool to help you in draft Derek has it. It currently only works for Fantrax but it is amazing and spits out projections showing you who can provide the most points. Bestball is an entirely different animal than typical fantasy leagues and this can help lead you to victory. Give it a whirl here.


Brian Seymour (@BrianJSeymour): Brian runs the only exclusive bestball podcast called “Fantasy Bestball Exclusive Podcast.” You can also follow his podcast at @FantastBestBal1. This podcast is a must for not only bestball players but all players. Brian’s smooth voice is aesthetically pleasing to the ears (does that make sense?) and he truly knows how to run a podcast so you get the most out of it. As a newcomer to bestball leagues, Brian’s podcast has really helped me evolve in that format. Check out his amazing podcast here.


Starting Pitching


Nick Pollack (@PitcherList): Nick might think I am a stalker at this point but I’m not sure he realizes how much he has influenced me. When I discovered PitcherList off a Reddit thread where someone suggested the website I was in awe at how amazing it was. Fast forward and Nick and his website have grown tremendously over the years becoming a household name.


A lot of my analysis has stemmed from Nick’s style by breaking down pitches individually and looking at the intricacies of a pitcher. Nick produces one of if not the most valuable articles in fantasy baseball. Every day during the season he reviews every pitcher’s performance and points out everything he sees. Such a valuable resource and helps tremendously during the season. Check out Nick’s website here, not that you don’t know it already.


Alex Fast (@AlexFast8): Is there anyone on planet earth who doesn’t like Alex Fast? On a serious note not only is Alex a great analyst and host but he’s also an awesome person. He lead the fantasy baseball forefront on trying to make our community more diverse and he also showed leadership by creating a mentorship program.


In terms of fantasy, Alex is nothing short of fantastic with the way he approaches his articles. He had a fantastic piece on how we are drafting saves wrong and was a key contributor to developing the CSW metric. Most importantly Alex loves to talk baseball and deals with my sometimes consistent DM’s. Whenever I see something interesting and need a take on it, I run to Alex making him a huge reason for my growth as an analyst. If you want to check out the “Drafting Saves Wrong,” article I mentioned earlier click here.


Eno Sarris (@EnoSarris): In terms of pitching analysis Eno Sarris is on the Mount Rushmore of analysts. When I first found out about Fangraphs Eno was the only analyst on there that I really gravitated towards. His articles are so well thought out and you would learn something new every time. I have been following him for well over five years and to this day he still teaches me something new.


He now writes for the Athletic and he alone makes the subscription well worth it. His work with Command+ and QOS is second to none and a key part of my analysis. Eno is just a wealth of knowledge and make sure you absorb everything he brings to the table. You can find his author page on the Athletic here.


Relief Pitching


Jorge Montanez (@Roto_Nino): In my eyes, Jorge has always been a very underrated writer. His best work comes during the season when he does weekly bullpen reports for Fantrax HQ. Jorge goes by division showing each closer as well as the next man up in the bullpen. He then analyzes what each closer did during the previous week. I love these articles because he does the work for you and hits you with quick knowledge.


What I learned most from Jorge lays within his writing. He writes in such an organized manner and you can tell he puts a lot of effort into every piece. He also keeps things simple and it is always a breath of fresh air. You can see one of his weekly bullpen articles here.


Mike Carter (@mdrc0508): Mike also does a weekly closer article called Closing Remarks for Roto Fanatic. Mike starts off with notes on what happened around the league providing you with key observations. He then provides you his rankings each week with breakdowns of each pitcher using charts and underlying metrics. This too becomes a must-read article every week. Mike made a big impact on me because he is wonderful at reminding you that this is all for fun. Mike enjoys doing this more than anyone and reminds you of that feeling when you sometimes forget it. If you’d like to see what his weekly article looks like during the season you can check it out here.


Hitting


Matt Williams (@MattWi77iams): When I think of hitter breakdowns Matt instantly comes to mind. He runs these dope Twitter threads that no one else does. He breaks each player down little by little while also throwing in some humor.


Matt isn’t afraid to teach and he decided to start the website Roto Fanatic to help others learn. Learn how to break down players as he does so they can do their own research. A true selfless approach. Whenever I have a question about breaking down a hitter I always DM Matt and he gladly helps me out with no hesitation. If you want to check out those amazing threads by Matt you can check out all of them here.


Michael Kurland (@Mike_Kurland): What can I say about Mike Kurland?! The guy is a nut! Mike was there from the beginning with me. He was the first one to invite me on a podcast and welcomed me with open arms. Mike always brings the fun to anything he does, but don’t let that fool you because he also is an amazing analyst. He does an awesome spring training lineup tracker on Twitter while also providing tangible changes from hitters around the league. Mike was there from the beginning and continues to just make things fun. Give his Twitter a follow!


Analytics


Alex Chamberlain (@DolphHauldhagen): There aren’t a lot of better analysts out of there when it comes to knowledge with analytics. Alex holds an invaluable tool with his pitcher leaderboard. It was unbelievable when he created it because it simplified Baseball Savant and provides a lot of information on pitchers. Alex adjusts it often and helped me better my research with his tool, while also always answering my questions about it. If you haven’t checked it out yet, make sure you do so here.


Ariel Cohen (@ATCNY): Ariel Cohen is the creator of the ATC projections. A projection system that has been the most accurate system for the past couple of years. Ariel’s projection system is the only one I use when it comes to draft preparation and really helps me find any outliers. He is also extremely approachable and answers any questions you might have. Make sure to check out his work on Fangraphs here!


Ryan Bloomfield (@RyanBHQ): If you follow Ryan you know of his famous Bloomboards. Before I started following Ryan I never thought to combine stats to find players who could be breaking out or vice versa. That’s what Ryan does, he combines stats and finds outliers. He also is a big contributor to Baseball HQ and their yearly fantasy magazine. If you want interesting stats make sure you check out Ryan’s Twitter.


DFS


Vlad Sedler (@RotoGut): I never gave DFS a real shot until the 2020 season and when I had an interest I reached out to Vlad. Vlad could not have been more open with providing advice. He gave me tips on money management and strategy. When I subscribed to the website he writes for (Elite Fantasy) I learned a lot about not only DFS but different statistics to use for streaming. The way Vlad looks at matchups and the underlying metrics he uses is impressive. I carried it over into my streaming analysis and it truly helped me step my game up. If you want quality advice that can help you in both DFS and fantasy join Elite Fantasy here and follow Vlad.


Podcasts


Doug Ishikawa (@Coachingish): I don’t even know where to start with Doug, he literally took my podcast from being meh and turned it into something legit. I remember when Doug approached me about doing a shorter podcast several people told me it would be redundant. But I went with my gut and brought Doug on board and it has paid off tremendously. From Doug, I learned how much one should truly prepare for a podcast from the intro to the transitions and to the closing remarks. He has helped me market our brand and pushed me out of my comfort zone. Doug is the best there is and I couldn’t be more grateful. Listen to Doug’s smooth tones on the SP Streamer podcast here.


Brian Entrekin (@BDentrek): Bubba is like the gatekeeper of the fantasy community. He always brings on new talent and gives them an opportunity to showcase themselves. He did that with me and I remember he was on a podcast a week later and mentioned how he thought I was a good analyst. It made my year and helped me realize my hard work was paying off. If you are new to the industry make sure you follow Bubba because he could be the one to give you your shot. To give a listen to his fantastic analysis you can find his podcast here.


Triple Play Fantasy Podcast (@TripPlayFantasy): When you really dive into this community you want to go full steam ahead and a lot of people warn you about burning out. It’s a real thing and once in a while you’ll think “why am I doing this,” or “this isn’t fun anymore.” When I first got invited onto the Triple Play podcast I was teetering into one of those moods. They quickly brought me out of it because these three hosts bring so much fun to their analysis and you can feel their energy. David (@Dmendy02), Eric (@E_Men_dee), and Art (@Art_T_Z) are fantastic together, and if you need a pick me up while also still getting great analysis you need to listen to their podcast here.


Paul Sporer (@Sporer): I remember Paul being the first big analyst to follow me and how excited I was. I also remember the first time he came onto a podcast with me and how nervous I was. Well if you ever have the pleasure of podcasting with Paul don't be nervous. He is straight-up awesome and just loves talking to anyone. Paul also gave me a shot to write for a website I never thought I'd see my name on. I owe Paul a lot and give him so much credit for giving me a shot. Thank you so much Paul!


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